To get customers/clients, keep them and to get enthusiastic referrals from them, follow these 25 proven rules:
1. Reward your clients. Send them a gift, provide them a lead, generate business for them, etc.
2. Use your clients’ services and buy their products. If you want to increase loyalty, there is no better way.
3. Send thank-you cards. Make sure they are handwritten and sent promptly. Peter Drucker attributed much of his success to the fact that he sent out 12 thank-you cards every day.
4. Return phone calls promptly. Since so many people don’t return calls, you automatically look good when you do.
5. Do what you say you are going to do.
6. Do things when you say you’re going to do them.
7. Under-promise and over-deliver.
8. Be accessible. Make sure you are available and willing to help customers/clients whenever there is a problem. Your business should be open to meet the convenience of your clients and not only for your convenience.
9. Be credible. If you can’t establish trust right away, clients may start to look at your competitors.
10. Appearance counts. Perception is reality, and the reality is that people do judge a book by its cover.
11. Show empathy. Put yourselves in the clients’ shoes and see things from their viewpoint, not just yours.
12. Have a “Goof Kit.” If you make a mistake, it’s not enough to say, “I’m sorry.”
13. Promote clients’ products and services. By getting business for your clients, you ensure you will have a client for life.
14. Do things for the client’s convenience, not yours. Make it as easy as possible for your clients to do business with you. The easier you can make it for your client to do business with you, the more business you will have. Determine all the ways you can eliminate the hassle factor.
15. Send an invoice periodically with a “no charge” on it. This will help your clients remember you. And if it is unexpected, it will have a much larger impact.
16. Have a client advisory panel. Only by knowing your clients’ wants and needs can you successfully grow your business and be totally client-oriented.
17. Hire mystery shoppers. To really find out how good your client service is, hire someone to go out and use your service from start to finish.
18. Be a resource. No matter what your client needs, try to find it for them — even if it has nothing to do with your business.
19. Shower clients with kindness.
20. Speak your clients’ language. If you use jargon your clients can’t understand, they will be confused and may not use you.
21. Have a great attitude.
22. Treat your employees well. If they are treated poorly, there is a good chance your clients will also get poor service.
23. Give your client what they want, when they want it and how they want it.
24. Give back to your best clients. If you run a special price or product offer for first-time clients, ensure your current clients are offered the same opportunity.
25. Don’t show an attitude of indifference to your clients. In a recent study on why people give up on a company, 68 percent quit because of an attitude of indifference toward the clients by the owner, manager or employees!
Great customer/client service is about giving the client what they want, when they want it and how they want it. It really comes down to the fact that good communication and human relationship skills equal great customer/client relations.